Abbildungen der Seite













Boling. Mine innocency and Saint George to

thrive! Mow. However God or Fortune cast my

lot, There lives or dies, true to King Richard's

throne, A loyal, just, and upright gentleman. Never did captive with a freer heart Cast off his chains of bondage and embrace His golden uncontroll'd enfranchisement, More than my dancing soul doth celebrate This feast of battle with mine adversary. Most mighty liege, and my companion peers, Take from my mouth the wish of happy years. As gentle and as jocund as to jest Go I to fight; truth hath a quiet breast.

K. Rich. Farewell, my lord ; securely I espy Virtue with valour couched in thine eye. Order the trial, Marshal, and begin. Mar. Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and

Derby, Receive thy lance; and God defend the right!

Boling. Strong as a tower in hope, I cry Mar. (To an officer.] Go bear this lance to

Thomas, Duke of Norfolk. 1. Her. Harry of Hereford, Lancaster, and

Derby Stands here for God, his sovereign, and him

self, On pain to be found false and recreant, To prove the Duke of Norfolk, Thomas Mow

bray, A traitor to his God, his king, and him ; And dares him to set forward to the fight. 2. Her. Here standeth Thomas Mowbray,

Duke of Norfolk, On pain to be found false and recreant, Both to defend himself and to approve Henry of Hereford, Lancaster, and Derby, To God, his sovereign, and to him disloyal'; Courageously and with a free desire Attending but the signal to begin. Mar. Sound, trumpets; and set forward, combatants.

(A charge sounded. Stay! The King hath thrown his warder

down. K. Rich. Let them lay by their helmets and

their spears, And both return back to their chairs again. 120 Withdraw with us; and let the trumpets sound While we return these dukes what we decree.

(A long flourish. Draw near And list what with our council we have done. For that our kingdom's earth should not be

soil'd With that dear blood which it hath fostered; And for our eyes do hate the dire aspect Of civil wounds plough'd up with neighbours'

sword ; And for we think the eagle-winged pride Of sky-aspiring and ambitious thoughts, With rival-hating envy, set on you To wake our peace, which in our country's

cradle Draws the sweet infant breath of gentle sleep;

Which, so rous'd up with boist'rous untun'd With harsh - resounding trumpets' dreadful

bray, And grating shock of wrathful iron arms, Might from our quiet confines fright fair peace And make us wade even in our kindred's

blood; Therefore, we banish you our territories. You, cousin Hereford, upon pain of life, Till twice five summers have enrich'd our fields Shall not regreet our-fair dominions, But tread the stranger paths of banishment. Boling. Your will be done. This must my

comfort be, That sun that warms you here shall shine on

me; And those his golden beams to you here lent Shall point on me and gild my banishment. K. Rich. Norfolk, for thee remains a heavier

doom, Which I with some unwillingness pronounce. The sly, slow hours shall not determinate The dateless limit of thy dear exile ; The hopeless word of" never to return" Breathe I against thee, upon pain of life. Mow. A heavy sentence, my most sovereign

liege, And all unlook'd for from your Highness'

mouth. A dearer merit, not so deep a maim As to be cast forth in the common air, Have I deserved at your Highness' hands. The language I have learn'd these forty years, My native English, now I must forgo; And now my tongue's use is to me no more Than an unstringed viol or a harp; Or like a cunning instrument cas'd up, Or, being open, put into his hands That knows no touch to tune the harmony. Within my mouth you have engaol'd my tongue, Donbly portcullis'd with my teeth and lips; And dull unfeeling barren ignorance Is made my gaoler to attend on me. I am too old to fawn upon a nurse, Too far in years to be a pupil now. What is thy sentence then but speechless death, Which robs my tongue from breathing native

breath? K. Rich. It boots thee not to be compassion

ate. After our sentence plaining comes too late. Mow. Then thus I turn me from my coun

try's light, To dwell in solemn shades of endless night. K. Rich. Return again, and take an oath

with thee. Lay on our royal sword your banish'd hands; Swear by the duty that you owe to GodOur part therein ve banish with yourselves To keep the oath that we administer: You never shall, so help you truth and God! Embrace each other's love in banishment; Nor never look upon each other's face; Nor never write, regreet, nor reconcile This louring tempest of your home-bred hate : Nor never by advised purpose meet













him so.


To plot, contrive, or complot any ill
'Gainst us, our state, our subjects, or our land.

Boling. 'I swear.
Mow. And I, to keep all this.

Boling. Norfolk, so far as to mine enemy:
By this time, had the King permitted us,
One of our souls had wand'red in the air,
Banish'd this frail sepulchre of our flesh,
As now our flesh is banish'd from this land;
Confess thy treasons ere thou fly the realm ;
Since thou hast far to go, bear not along
The clogging burden of a guilty soul.
Mow. No, Boling broke ; if ever I were

traitor, My name be blotted from the book of life, And I from heaven banish'd as from hence ! But what thou art, God, thou, and I do know; And all too soon, I fear, the King shall rue. 206 Farewell, my liege. Now no way can I stray; Save back to England, all the world 's my way.

[Erit. K. Rich. Uncle, even in the glasses of thine

eyes I see thy grieved heart. Thy sad aspect Hath from the number of his banish'd years 210 Pluck'd four away. (To Boling.) Six frozen

winters spent, Return with welcome home from banishment. Boling. How long a time lies in one little

word ! Four lagging winters and four wanton springs End in a word : such is the breath of kings. 215

Gaunt. I thank my liege, that in regard of He shortens four years of my son's exile ; But little vantage shall I reap thereby, For, ere the six years that he hath to spend Can change their moons and bring their times

about, My oil-dri'd lamp and time-bewasted light Shall be extinct with age and endless night; My inch of taper will be burnt and done, And blindfold death not let me see my son. K. Rich. Why, uncle, thou hast many years

to live. Gaunt. But not a minute, King, that thou

canst give. Shorten my days thou canst with sullen sor

row, And pluck nights from me, but not lend a Thon canst help Time to furrow me with age, But stop no wrinkle in his pilgrimage. Thy word is current with him for my death, But dead, thy kingdom cannot buy my breath. K. Rich. Thy son is banish'd upon good ad

vice, Whereto thy tongue a party-verdict gave. Why at our justice seem'st thon then to lour ? Gaunt. Things sweet to taste prove in diges

tion sour. You urg'd me as a judge ; but I had rather You would have bid me argue like a father. O, had it been a stranger, not my child, To smooth his fault I should have been more

miid. A partial slander sought I to avoid,


And in the sentence my own life destroy'd.
Alas, I look'd when some of you should say
I was too strict to make mine own away;
But you gave leave to my unwilling tongue sus
Against my will to do myself this wrong;

K. Rich. Cousin, farewell; and, uncle, bid Six years we banish him, and he shall go.

(Flourish. Exeunt (King Richard

and train). Aum. Cousin, farewell! What presence must

not know, From where you do remain let paper show. 28 Mar. My lord, no leave take I; for I will

ride, As far as land will let me, by your side. Gaunt. O, to what purpose dost thou hoard

thy words, That thou return'st no greeting to thy friends ? Boling. I have too few to take my leave of

you, When the tongue's office should be prodigal To breathe the abundant dolour of the heart. Gaunt. Thy grief is but thy absence for a

time. Boling. Joy absent, grief is present for that

time. Gaunt. What is six winters? They are

quickly gone. Boling. To men in joy; but grief makes

one hour ten. Gaunt. Call it a travel that thou tak'st for

pleasure. Boling. My heart will sigh when I miscall Which finds it an inforced pilgrimage. Gaunt. The sullen passage of thy weary

steps Esteem as foil wherein thou art to set The precious jewel of thy home return. Boling. Nay, rather, every tedious stride I

make Will but remember me what a deal of world I wander from the jewels that I love. Must I not serve a long apprenticehood To foreign passages, and in the end, Having my freedom, boast of nothing else But that I was a journeyman to grief? Gaunt. All places that the eye of heaven

visits Are to a wise man ports and happy havens. Teach thy necessity to reason thus ; There is no virtue like necessity. Think not the King did banish thee, But thou the King. Woe doth the beavier

sit Where it perceives it is but faintly borne. Go, say I sent thee forth to purchase honour And not the King exil'd thee; or suppose Devouring pestilence hangs in our air And thou art flying to a fresher clime. Look, what thy soul holds dear, imagine it To lie that way thou goest, not whence thou

com'st. Suppose the singing birds musicians, The grass whereon thou tread'st the presence


it so,


[ocr errors]















As 't were to banish their affects with him.
Off goes his bonnet to an oyster-wench;
A brace of draymen bid God speed him well
And had the tribute of his supple knee,
With “Thanks, my countrymen, my loving

As were our England in reversion his,
And he our subjects' next degree in hope.
Green. Well, he is gone ; and with him go

these thoughts. Now for the rebels which stand out in Ireland, Expedient manage must be made, my liege, Ere further leisure yield them further means 40 For their advantage and your Highness' loss. K. Rich. We will ourself in person to this

war ; And, for our coffers, with too great a court And liberal largess, are grown somewhat light, We are inforc'd to farm our royal realm ; The revenue whereof shall furnish us For our affairs in hand. If that come short, Our substitutes at home shall have blank char

ters; Whereto, when they shall know what men are

rich, They shall subscribe them for large sums of

gold And send them after to supply our wants ; For we will make for Ireland presently.

Enter Bushy. (Bushy, what news ?]

Bushy. Old John of Gaunt is grievous sick, Suddenly taken ; and hath sent post haste To entreat your Majesty to visit him. K. Rich. Where lies he ? Bushy. At Ely House. K. Rich. Now put it, God, in the physician's

mind To help him to his grave immediately! The lining of his coffers shall make coats To deck our soldiers for these Irish wars. Come, gentlemen, let's all go visit him. Pray God we may make haste, and come too

late! (All.) Amen.

(Exeunt. 65


The flowers fair ladies, and thy steps no more
Than a delightful measure or a dance ;
For gnarling sorrow hath less power to bite
The man that mocks at it and sets it light.

Boling. O, who can hold a fire in his hand
By thinking on the frosty Caucasus ?
Or cloy the hungry edge of appetite
By bare imagination of a feast?
Or wallow naked in December snow
By thinking on fantastic summer's heat?
0. no! the apprehension of the good
Gives but the greater feeling to the worse.
Fell Sorrow's tooth doth never rankle more
Than when he bites, but lanceth not the sore.
Gaunt. Come, come, my son, I'll bring thee

on thy way; Had I thy youth and cause, I would not stay. Boling. Then, England's ground, farewell ;

sweet soil, adieu ; My mother, and my purse, that bears me yet! Where'er I wander, boast of this I can, Though banish’d, yet a trueborn Englishman.

[Exeunt. SCENE IV. (The Court.] Enter the KING, with Bagot and Green at one door;

and the DUKE OF AUMERLE at another.

K. Rich. We did observe. Cousin Aumerle, How far brought you high Hereford on his way?

Aum. I brought high Hereford, if you call But to the next highway, and there I left him. K. Rich. And say, what store of parting tears

were shed ? Aum. Faith, none for me ; except the north

east wind, Which then blew bitterly against our faces, Awak'd the sleeping rheum, and so by chance Did grace our hollow parting with a tear. K. Rich. What said our cousin when you

parted with him ? Aum. Farewell!" And, for my heart disdained that my tongue Should so profane the word, that taught me

craft To counterfeit oppression of such grief That words seem'd buried in

my sorrow's grave. Marry, would the word “farewell” have

length'ned hours And added years to his short banishment, He should have had a volume of farewells; But since it would not, he had none of me. K. Rich. He is our cousin, cousin ; but 't is

doubt, When time 'sball call him home from banish

ment, Whether our kinsman come to see his friends. Ourself and Bushy, (Bagot here and Green] Observ'd his courtship to the common people ; How he did seem to dive into their hearts With humble and familiar courtesy, What reverence he did throw away on slaves, Wooing poor craftsmen with the craft of smiles And patient underbearing of his fortune,

him so,

my lord,


[ocr errors]






SCENE I. (London. Ely House.] Enter JOHN OF Gaunt, sick, with the DUKE OF

YORK, etc. Gaunt. Will the King come, that I may

breathe my last In wholesome counsel to his unstaid youth ? York. Vex not yourself, nor strive not with

your breath; For all in vain comes counsel to his ear.

Gaunt. O, but they say the tongues of dying Enforce attention like deep harmony. Where words are scarce, they are seldom spent

in vain, For they breathe truth that breathe their

words in pain.


[ocr errors]



[blocks in formation]






[ocr errors]

He that no more must say is listen'd more Than they whom youth and ease have taught

to glose. More are men's ends mark'd than their lives

before. The setting sun, and music at the close, As the last taste of sweets, is sweetest last, Writ in remembrance more than things long

past. Though Richard my life's counsel would not

hear, My death's sad tale may yet undeaf his ear. York. No; it is stopp'd with other flattering

sounds, As praises, of whose taste the wise are found, Lascivious metres, to whose venom sound The open ear of youth doth always listen; Report of fashions in proud Italy, Whose manners still our tardy, apish nation Limps after in base imitation. Where doth the world thrust forth a vanity – So it be new, there's no respect how vile That is not quickly buzz'd into his ears? Then all too late comes counsel to be heard. Where will doth mutiny with wit's regard. Direct not him whose way himself will choose ; 'Tis breath thou lack'st, and that breath wilt

thou lose. Gaunt. Methinks I am a prophet new in

spir'd And thus expiring do foretell of him: His rash fierce blaze of riot cannot last, For violent fires soon burn out themselves; Small showers last long, but sudden storms are

short; He tires betimes that spurs too fast betimes ; With eager feeding food doth choke the feeder; Light vanity, insatiate cormorant, Consuming means, soon preys upon itself. This royal throne of kings, this scept'red isle, This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, diThis other Eden, demi-paradise, This fortress built by Nature for herself Against infection and the hand of war, This happy breed of men, this little world, This precious stone set in the silver sea, Which serves it in the office of a wall Or as a moat defensive to a house Against the envy of less happier lands, This blessed plot, this earth, this realm, this

England, This nurse, this teeming womb of royal kings, Fear'd by their breed and famous by their

birth, Renowned for their deeds as far from home, For Christian service and true chivalry, As is the sepulchre in stubborn Jewry, Of the world's ransom, blessed Mary's Son, This land of such dear souls, this dear dear

land, Dear for her reputation through the world, Is now leas'd out, I die pronouncing it, Like to a tenement or pelting farm. England, bound in with the triumphant sea, Whose rocky shore beats back the envious siege Of watery Neptune, is nuw bound in with



York. The King is come. Deal mildly with

his youth; For young hot colts being rag'd do rage the

Queen. How fares our noble unele Lancaster ? R. Rich. What comfort, man? How is 't

with aged Gaunt? Gaunt. 0, how that name befits my compo

sition! Old Gaunt indeed, and gaunt in being old. Within me Grief hath kept a tedious fast; And who abstains from meat that is not gaunt? For sleeping England long time have I watch'd; Watching breeds leanness, leanness is all gaunt. The pleasure that some fathers feed upon, Is my strict fast; I mean, puy children's looks; And therein fasting, hast thou made me gaunt. Gaunt am I for the grave, gaunt as a grave, Whose hollow womb inherits nought but bones. K. Rich. Can sick men play so nicely with

their names ? Gaunt. No, misery makes sport to moek

itself. Since thou dost seek to kill my name in me, I mock my name, great King, to flatter thee. K. Rich. Should dying men flatter, with

those that live ? Gaunt. No, no, men living flatter those that

die. K. Rich. Thou, now a-dying, say'st thon

Aatter'st me. Gaunt. 0, no! thou diest, though I the

sicker be. K. Rich. I am in health, I breathe, and see

thee ill. Gaunt. Now He that made me knows I see

thee ill ; Ill in myself to see, and in thee seeing ill. Thy death-bed is no lesser than thy land Wherein thou liest in reputation sick; And thou, too careless patient as thou art, Commit'st thy anointed body to the cure Of those physicians that first wounded thee. A thousand fatterers sit within thy crown, Whose compass is no bigger than thy head; And yet, incaged in so small a verge, The waste is no whit lesser than thy land. O, had thy grandsire with a prophet's eye Seen how his son's son should destroy his sons, From forth thy reach he would have laid thy

shame, Deposing thée before thou wert possess'd, Which art possess'd now to depose thyself. Why, cousin, wert thou regent of the world, It were a shame to let this land by lease ; But for thy world enjoying but this land, Is it not more than shame to shame it so ?


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]









ward's son,








Landlord of England art thou now, not king. Thy state of law is bondslave to the law, And thou

K. Rich. A lunatic lean-witted fool, Presuming on an ague's privilege, Dar'st with thy frozen admonition Make pale our cheek, chasing the royal blood With fury from his native residence. Now, by my seat's right royal majesty, Wert thou not brother to great Edward's son, This tongue that runs so roundly in thy head Should run thy head from thy unreverent

shoulders. Gaunt. 0, spare me not, my brother EdFor that I was his father Edward's son. That blood already, like the pelican, Hast thon tapp'd out and drunkenly carous'd. My brother Gloucester, plain well-meaning soul, Whom fair befall in heaven 'mongst happy

souls ! May be a precedent and witness good That thou respect'st not spilling Edward's

blood. Join with the present sickness that I have, And thy unkindness be like crooked age, To crop at once a too long wither'd flower. Live in thy shame, but die not shame with thee! These words hereafter thy tormentors be! Convey me to my bed, then to my grave; Love they to live that love and honour have.

[Exit (borne off by his Attendants). K. Rich. And let them die that age and

sullens have ; For both hast thou, and both become the grave. York. I do beseech your Majesty, impute

his words To wayward sickliness an

age in him. He loves you, on my life, and holds you dear As Harry Duke of Hereford, were he here. K. Rich. Right, you say true. As Hereford's

love, so his ;
As theirs, so mine ; and all be as it is.

North. My liege, old Gaunt commends him

to your Majesty.
K. Rich. What says he ?

Nay, nothing ; all is said. His tongue is now a stringless instrument; Words, life, and all, old Lancaster hath spent. York. Be York the next that must be bank

rupt so! Though death be poor, it ends a mortal woe. K. Rich. The ripest fruit first falls, and so

doth he; His time is spent, our pilgrimage must be. So much for that. Now for our Irish wars. Wemust supplant those rough rog-headed kerns, Which live like venom where no venom else But only they have privilege to live. And for these great affairs do ask some charge, Towards our assistance we do seize to us The plate, coin, revenues, and moveables, Whereof our uncle Gaunt did stand possess'd. York. How long shall I be patient ? Ah,

how long

Shall tender duty make me suffer wrong?
Not Gloucester's death, nor Hereford's banish-

ment, Not Gaunt's rebukes, nor England's private

wrongs, Nor the prevention of poor Bolingbroke About his marriage, nor my own disgrace, Have ever made me sour my patient cheek, Or bend one wrinkle on my sovereign's face. 170 I am the last of noble Edward's sons, Of whom thy father, Prince of Wales, was

first. In war was never lion rag'd more fierce, In peace was never gentle lamb more mild, Than was that young and princely gentleHis face thou hast, for even so look'd he, Accomplish'd with the number of thy hours ; But when he frown'd, it was against the French And not against his friends. His noble hand Did win what he did spend and spent not

that Which his triumphant father's hand had won. His hands were guilty of no kindred blood, But bloody with the enemies of his kin. O Richard! York is too far gone with grief, Or else he never would compare between. K. Rich. Why, uncle, what's the matter? York.

O my liege, Pardon me, if you please ; if not, I, pleas'd Not to be pardon'd, am content withal. Seek you to seize and gripe into your hands The royalties and rights of banish'd Here

ford ? Is not Gaunt dead, and doth not Hereford live? Was not Gaunt just, and is not Harry true ? Did not the one deserve to have an heir ? Is not his heir a well-deserving son ? Take Hereford's rights away, and take from

Time His charters and his customary rights ; Let not to-morrow then ensue to-day; Be not thyself; for how art thou a king But by fair sequence and succession ? Now, afore God - God forbid I say true! If you do wrongfully seize Hereford's rights, Call in the letters patents that he hath By his attorneys general to sue His livery, and deny his off'red homage, You pluck a thousand dangers on your head, 205 You lose a thousand well-disposed hearts And prick my tender patience to those

thoughts Which honour and allegiance cannot think.

K. Rich. Think what you will, we seize into His plate, his goods, his money, and his

lands. York. I'll not be by the while. My liege,

farewell ! What will ensue hereof, there's none can tell ; But by bad courses may be understood That their events can never fall out good.

Erit. K. Rich. Go, Bushy, to the Earl of Wilt

shire straight. Bid him repair to us to Ely House







our hands





« ZurückWeiter »